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Showing posts from October, 2011

A Dirndl for Oktoberfest: Burda 8448

Burda 8448 My daughter went to Germany as a foreign exchange student several years ago, and ever since, she has been asking me to make her a dirndl for Oktoberfest.  I finally succumbed this year to her request.  A dirndl is a traditional German folk costume that includes a dress with a very full skirt and a very fitted bodice, an apron that goes over the skirt, and a peasant top to go under the bodice. Burda magazine always features a dirndl in their September issue, and the Burda pattern book had lots of styles to choose from- from sexy St. Pauli girl type outfits, to long covered up ones. My daughter chose 8448, which is one of the more covered up ones.  I used a black striped linen for the skirt, a pretty blue cotton for the apron, a black stretch corduroy for the bodice, and a lovely white batiste with little pink tufts of embroidery for the blouse. The pattern takes a TON of fabric- it called for 3-3/8 yds just for the skirt.  My daughter is petite and

One Pattern, One Afternoon, 4 Looks!

I'm so excited- I think I just found my new go to TNT (Tried-n-True) pattern for a draped neck t-shirt!  The pattern is from the Fall/Winter issue of My Image magazine, style #1152.  A mere 3 pattern pieces, and a Saturday afternoon sewing time, and I was able to whip up 4 completely different looks.  Version #1- work top My one tip with this pattern- eliminate the back neck facing- you don't need it!  Just turn under 1/2" and topstitch in place.   The first is a  work look- I used a poly/lycra jersey knit in a crazy black, cream and red animal print.   This one went together so well, and fit so perfectly, that as soon as I was done, I said, "okay, what else can I make from this pattern?" Version #2 Casual top with jeans   So, my next version is more casual- it's a grey and white geometric rayon lycra knit that I thought I could wear with my grey jeans.  Again, my growing addiction to this pattern left me hungry for more!  So, I thought &qu

Win A Free Pattern!

Guess what!?  You could win a free pattern!  Just follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Follow and Comment on our newest blog posts right here! Or, do all three!!!  10 Winners will be chosen next Tuesday 10.25.2011!

My Dear Watson- It's a Cape!

I'm giving a nod to Sherlock Holmes' style in my latest sewing escapade.  This plaid wool cape is for a friend of mine who is preparing for a life of excitement and adventure.  She is expecting a baby in late January: the COLDEST time of the year in Illinois!  Coats are my specialty, but I wanted to make something non-maternity, that she could continue to wear anytime after the baby is born. So, voila, a CAPE came to mind!  I've never owned or made a cape before, so this was a journey into the unknown for me.  Here is my pattern review for Simplicity 2285 that I posted on   Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, but the pocket area is a little tricky and you have to think through that. When I was making it, I forgot that I was making a cape, not a coat, and was thinking "These are the craziest pocket instructions I've ever seen!!! How did these ever get approved!!!!". Then I realized that the pockets are accessible

My Image 1157 Princess Seamed Dress

I'm excited to make my first item from the My Image Fall/Winter 2011 magazine !  I love this pattern magazine because its designs are so wearable and they include a lot of designs for knits. This one is style 1157. Pattern Description: Long sleeved princess style dress with a gathered front inset. Pattern Sizing: European sizes 36-44.  I made size 42, which is about a US size 12 in RTW. Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? No, I don't think that the line drawing portrayed the center front correctly. It's only gathered on one side, and the line drawing looks like it is gathered on both sides. Were the instructions easy to follow? The only problem that I had was with where to match the notches on the front panels. There were too many notches!! I originally must have chosen the wrong ones to match the center front panel with the side front panel, as the neckline came to below my bra line. I actual

Bundle Sale at SewBaby

If you have a tendency to want every fabric because they are all so beautiful, but don't have the space to keep yards and yards, then you will love our fabric bundles!  We've selected several fabrics that all go wonderfully together, and packaged them in bundles that contain 1/2 yard of each fabric.  These are wonderful to help you get creative!  Use one fabric for a collar, another fabric for a hem band, perhaps another for the bodice and another for the skirt.  Or if you are making home dec items, piece together the pieces for valances, pillow tops, aprons, etc.  The possibilities are limitless! Another wonderful thing about our bundles, is that they are always 10% less than you would pay regularly for them if you were to buy them individually.  And to entice you to try them out, we are offering a special coupon for an extra 15% off the bundles until October 17th! Just type in the code BUNDLE11 when you check out to get this extra discount. Visit our bundl

Sewing 101 Class Projects!

 I took on a new adventure this September.  I decided to teach sewing classes for our local community college, Parkland College , and for the Urbana Adult Education program.  I've taught private sewing lessons before, but not a group, so I had to think about how to go about it.  I, myself, am a project based learner- learning through actually making something, not by listening to a lecture or reading a book. So, Shirley suggested that our Double Duty bag pattern would be a great project that would appeal to a wide variety of people, and could be used in many situations- knitting bag, diaper bag, beach bag, etc. Shirley has made over 50 of these bags herself, so I invited her to be my teaching assistant during class. The students were amazing and very patient with us as we learned what worked and what didn't with our set-up.  They did a fantastic job, and here are the pictures to prove it!     We held the class here at Sewbaby because I had collected enough Berni